February 21, 2010 Subject:
"He mauled me with his brute strength and ponderous weight!"
I had a dream in which a fat guy with a cigar was saying, “To hell with the audience. I know how to make a movie on the cheap. We shoot some sound footage of Louie in a gorilla suit, and paste it onto an out-of-copyright, silent jungle flick.” It may have only been a dream, but I’ll bet dollars to donuts that’s exactly how “The White Gorilla” was born. The silent film that was so shamelessly exploited was the overwrought serial “Perils of the Jungle”(1927). A narrator was needed to tie it all together, so there's also new sound footage of a guy peeking out from behind bushes to describe the action. (I’m not lying. I swear!) Why then, in the name of all that’s rational, have I given this thing three stars? Because it is a prime example of the deviousness of man. But mostly because it must be seen to be believed - provided the following instructions are followed to the letter: When you’re done chuckling at the guy peeking out from behind the bushes, fast forward until you see a guy in a white gorilla suit. Be sure to have a box of tissues handy, because by the time it’s over you’ll either be laughing or crying so hard they'll be needed. FOOTNOTE: If you think this was the only time somebody had the moxie pull this kind of audience rip off, you’re wrong. The perfect companion piece to “The White Gorilla” is “Queen of the Amazons”(1947), in which sound footage of a ludicrous story line was added to scenes from several silent films. It's available here at the Archive.